Paul Miller / Flickr cc

Roughly 40% of startups participating in the latest session of Y Combinator, the famed Silicon Valley startup accelerator, came from overseas—more than a 10% gain over prior sessions. And of the 22 countries represented, several were emerging markets like Nigeria, Ghana, Poland and Russia.

While the added diversity made this week's YC Demo Day more interesting, it also raises questions about fundraising prospects.

The case against: Several early-stage investors at Demo Day told Axios that they're unlikely to invest in these overseas startups. The most commonly cited reasons were lack of expertise—or even any knowledge—of their home markets, and how difficult it would be to work closely with a company so far away. Some added that their funds have provisions limiting how much they can invest into international companies, if at all. And even if some of these companies do get funded, the expectation is that the dollar amounts and valuations will be artificially low.

The case for: Many of the companies based in emerging markets are building very fundamental and clearly needed products, such as Wi-Fi services or online payments tech—areas with obvious opportunities for investment returns regardless of geography, argues Michael Siebel, CEO of YC's accelerator program. Second, most of them already are operating profitably or at least generate significant revenue, something that is back en vogue with VCs. And if these companies ultimately raise less than their stateside peers, Siebel says that such investments can stretch further. For example, Paystack, a Nigerian payments company that participated last year, raised just over $1 million, giving it enough runway for four years.

Go deeper

Erica Pandey, author of @Work
21 mins ago - Economy & Business

Remote work won't kill your office

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

We can officially declare the 9-to-5, five-days-a-week, in-office way of working dead. But offices themselves aren't dead. And neither are cities.

The big picture: Since the onset of pandemic-induced telework, companies have oscillated between can't-wait-to-go-back and work-from-home-forever. Now, it's becoming increasingly clear that the future of work will land somewhere in the middle — a remote/in-person hybrid.

FBI: Foreign actors likely to sow disinformation about delays in election results

Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

The FBI and Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency released a public service announcement on Tuesday warning that mail-in ballots "could leave officials with incomplete results on election night," and that foreign actors are likely to spread disinformation about the delays.

The bottom line: The agencies called on the public to "critically evaluate the sources of the information they consume and to seek out reliable and verified information from trusted sources," including state and local election officials.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 4 p.m. ET: 31,433,180 — Total deaths: 966,970— Total recoveries: 21,546,587Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 4 p.m. ET: 6,882,969 — Total deaths: 200,477 — Total recoveries: 2,615,974 — Total tests: 95,846,925Map.
  3. Health: The U.S. reaches 200,000 coronavirus deaths — The CDC's crumbling reputation — America turns against coronavirus vaccine.
  4. Politics: Elected officials are failing us on much-needed stimulus.
  5. Business: Two-thirds of business leaders think pandemic will lead to permanent changes — Fed chair warns economy will feel the weight of expired stimulus.
  6. Sports: NFL fines maskless coaches.

Get Axios AM in your inbox

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!